Durant and U.S. to face France in Tokyo 2020 re-match for men's basketball gold medal

SAITAMA, JAPAN - AUGUST 05: Kevin Durant #7 of Team United States high-fives teammate Damian Lillard #6 during the first half of a Men's Basketball quarterfinals game on day thirteen of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Saitama Super Arena on August 05, 2021 in Saitama, Japan. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
SAITAMA, JAPAN - AUGUST 05: Kevin Durant #7 of Team United States high-fives teammate Damian Lillard #6 during the first half of a Men's Basketball quarterfinals game on day thirteen of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Saitama Super Arena on August 05, 2021 in Saitama, Japan. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Veteran Kevin Durant and the Americans will have to rebound from a group loss to France earlier at Tokyo 2020. Here's what you need to know. 

As Kevin Durant and Team USA goes after its fourth consecutive Olympic gold medal in men's basketball, France is eying a first.

And the French have every right to be.

It was the opening game of Tokyo 2020 for both squads when France stunned the Americans, 83-76 - but neither team has lost since.

They'll meet for gold on Saturday (7 Aug.) at 11:30am JST, with Olympic veterans Durant and Draymond Green leading the U.S. effort as Evan Fournier and Rudy Gobert helm a French squad hungry for gold.

What did each team's path to the final look like? And when and how can you watch?

Team USA: Bouncing back after early loss

Question marks swirled around Team USA after it had bumps in the road during pre-Games exhibitions and the group loss to France, in which the Americans let a fourth-quarter lead slip away.

But since then they have improved with every game, unbothered by Iran or the Czech Republic in two later group match-ups before Spain made them work in a 95-81 quarter-final win. The U.S. was never in much danger against Australia in the semi-finals, capturing that game 97-78.

Durant came to life against Spain, dumping in 29 points as newcomers Jayson Tatum (13), Jrue Holiday (12), Damian Lillard (11) and Zach Lavine (10) added to the offensive effort.

It was more of Durant in the Australian game, 23 points and nine rebounds. Khris Middleton contributed 11, while Devin Booker connected for 20. The Americans have shown an ability to spread their offense around the court, making them more dangerous for France than their initial Tokyo match-up.

France: Undefeated - with not a point to spare

After a victorious start the Olympics against the U.S., France had no trouble with either the Czechs or Iranians.

They rallied in the second half of their quarter-final to beat Italy 84-75, then needed late-game heroics to overcome Luka Doncic and Slovenia, a blocked shot by Nicolas Batum securing France just a one-point win, 90-89.

Fournier has been a monster on offense, with 23 vs. the Slovenians, while Nando de Colo scored 25 and Timothe Luwawu Cabarrot hit for 15.

The French were runners up to the U.S. at Sydney 2000 - and are still searching for a first Olympic gold in men's basketball.

The class of 2021: Bring on the challengers
04:23

There was the Dream Team, the Redeem Team, and this is the class of 2021. The US men's basketball team suffered two shock defeats in warm-up games ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Games in 2021. The NBA stars don't seem to be too concerned.

When and how to watch

The men's basketball medal games will take place on Saturday (7 Aug.) for both the bronze and the gold inside the Saitama Super Arena.

11:30 JST - U.S. v France - Gold medal game

20:00 JST - Slovenia v Australia - Bronze medal game

Not sure where or how you can watch the Games? Find out here.

How to watch men's basketball at the Tokyo 2020 Games

You can find out where to watch all the action at the Tokyo Olympic Games by clicking here.

For real-time updates on the sporting drama as it unfolds following our Tokyo 2020 live blog here.